• Ryan Haynes

The 5 myths of #PR - strategic marketing can't work without!

In the last 20 years, I've discovered that a focused #marketingstrategy and #business strategic vision doesn't work without being aware of the people you need to invest in to get there, and this comes down to understanding the space you currently occupy and the space you want to own in the market.


Talk to people - don't just push out marketing

While some may call this buyer personas, your marketing is much more than your #customers - it's how you build a #communications infrastructure and ensure a consistent delivery of the business' values, beliefs and messages.


And that is why, for me at least, these #PRmyths need to be busted: -

Myth One - PR is about #journalists

NO! PR actually means Public Relations, public referring to all the audiences connected to your business - or you may term them stakeholders. Stakeholders are either internal or external and have direct or indirect influence on your business. Some are primary, others are secondary, a few sit on the periphery.


You need to know who your #stakeholders are and the influence they have on your business and your business strategy. In my experience, too many companies forget about the huge value their internal stakeholders have over the success of their business and achieving core strategic goals. There is often too much emphasis placed on prospects than on existing or long-term retained customers


The media industry has changed, journalists want a real news hook

Furthermore, I often see organisations ignore competitors or industry peers in favour of 'going it alone' - failing to see the opportunity of leadership through collaboration. Most of the world's most successful companies are built by word of mouth and recommendation, and you don't have to be a customer to talk positively about another company.


Myth Two - PR is not measurable

FALSE!!! Without KPIs all activity is immeasurable. You need to take time to set #KPIs for your business goals and use the right PR activity to help achieve those. Maintaining and developing good relations internally can increase retention rates, productivity, and sales plus reduce absenteeism.


Building strong industry relations and communicating business milestones and thought-leadership can give you access to a wider talent pool and therefore more applicants for vacancies.


A piece of news coverage or a feature piece in a magazine can lead to increase web visits or customers - if you target the right publication that represents your core audience.


Working closely with Government officials can change laws and regulation. Don't underestimate the power or PR, as it can all be tracked and measured.


Myth Three - PR is all spin and lies

It doesn't have to be! And I hope not! PR certainly goes a long way in celebrating the success and achievements of a business, but certainly the more lies you spin the more likely you are to become undone.


PR goes a long way at creating smoke and mirrors - forming an illusion that a company is larger than it actually is

Strong, sustainable PR rests in the foundation of evidence, using fact as your base point helps drive the ambition to grow the business further. By embedding PR practices across every department and channel, they can contribute to deliver results that can be shared and celebrated. Don't leave results just to the weekly call - make it part of the fabric of your business.


PR is what you make it - and is the best way to communicate your values and beliefs.


Myth Four - PR doesn't tell the whole story

Actually this IS True - but that's because the story can be too long-winded, be full of complicated technical jargon and buzz words, or it's just irrelevant! The job of PR is to tell the narrative using accessible language that the widest audience can connect with.


PR experts are the translators of the intelligent whizz kids and number crunching wizards; it's our job to simplify the message so people understand and see themselves in the solution.


Let the story be split into chapters to keep your audience engaged.


Myth Five - PR is expensive

True if you want the bells, whistles and glitter too. However PR can be tiered, you need to focus PR on the areas of the business that will help you achieve your commercial goals. This is no different to trying to do #broadcast advertising, some budgets stretch to peak-time programming, others rely on regional off-peak schedules.


Strong campaigns rely on focused strategic objectives and strong relationships

But you need to do what's right for your strategic goals, and ensure the PR results are delivering on those goals. Too often PR Agencies will celebrate all and any coverage, but if it doesn't meet your business goals - it's not worth celebrating.


If your goal is to build partnerships in your industry sector, you only need media coverage in your specific trade sector, you only should do events where the potential partners attend, you only need to share stories that connect with target partners' strategic goals.


When taking on an agency - understand the value that their work will bring to your business goals.


Conclusion

Strategic marketing is about fulfilling the mission of the business through a set of commercial gaols, making noise in the market sector to encourage engagement, consumption and purchase of your product. Marketing must communicate to audiences, defined by their habits, interests and association to the company - relationships need to be developed with these stakeholders to build sustainability for the business.


Don't forget - PR = public relations


It's nothing to do with fluffy campaigns and media coverage - it's about what your company truly stands for!


Do you have business goals in mind for your business and want to know how PR can help? Give me a call and we can talk to you about a suitable approach to realise your aims. ryan@ryanhaynesmarketing.com

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Haynes MarComs supports businesses with strategic brand marcomms and digital and PR

campaigns by taking an holistic approach to sales, marketing and customer delivery. Our aim is to make your business more efficient and productive in your go-to-market strategy to secure the confidence from the market that drives lead generation to meet your commercial goals. 

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